Winds damage Hutch shelter, displaces residents


Wind gusts of up to 79 mph hit the city of Hutchinson over the weekend, taking with it debris from the roof of the New Beginnings: Meadowlark Complex.

The Meadowlark Complex is a transitional housing unit which provides lodging for people transitioning out of homelessness. Currently, 18 of its residents are displaced as the roof is repaired.

“From what I was told, it kind of lifted the roof up, sat it back down and proceeded to blow it away,” program director Jo Mora said Monday.

The Salvation Army covered two nights of costs in a motel, but now New Beginnings is relying on donations to continue to house residents in a motel. Even that is temporary.

“Unfortunately, Hutchinson is running into the Kansas State Fair and so hotels are filling up fast. Getting a hotel that could even take everybody for up to two weeks, which is kind of the time frame we’ve been given, was really hard to do,” Mora said.

The office space in the Meadowlark Complex is also ruined as water continues to trickle in, damaging desks, computers and supplies. Mora reports, they are in need of over $5,000 for lodging for residents, and $22,000 for repairing damage to the building as insurance does not cover wind damage, only tornado damage.

New Beginnings equips clients with the tools to get back on their feet. But each client is only in this program for a maximum of two years.

“We need to get the most done as possible with each person,” Mora said.

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